Something’s Missing

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Unless you’ve been in a coma for the last twenty years, you know who John Mayer is. He displays an enormous musical talent, and evidently possesses an ego to match. Think of him what you will, one would be hard pressed to find a better song writer alive today. Some of his lyrics reveal insights that go beyond pop pablum. I’m thinking particularly of a song from his album, Heavier Things, entitled “Something’s Missing.” Heavier things

I’m dizzy from the shopping mall
I searched for joy but I bought it all
It doesn’t help the hunger pains
And a thirst I’d have to drown first to ever satiate

In “Something’s Missing” Mayer echoes the themes from the Book of Ecclesiastes. Like Solomon, Mayer has indulged in everything this world has to offer. Wealth, applause, lovers–he admits that has experienced them all. At one point in the song he checks off all the things he has:

Friends? “check”
Money? “check”
Well-slept? “check”
Opposite sex? “check”

And yet, he laments, he feels empty inside. Something’s missing. The chorus repeats a sad refrain:

Something’s missing and I don’t know how to fix it
Something’s missing and I don’t know what it is
No, I don’t know what it is at all

Mayer ends the song with a mystified query:

How come everything I think I need
Always comes with batteries?
What do you think it means?

Augustine tells us what John is missing. In his Confessions, Augustine says to God, “You have made us for yourself, and our hearts are restless until they find rest in you.”

This blog is cross-posted at www.theologyforthechurch.com

For the Life of the World

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I just want to say one word to you; just one word. Are you listening? One word: ‘Oikonomia.’ Will you think about it? Enough said.”

Last Thursday night the Bush Center for Faith and Culture hosted a showing of the Acton Institute’s new film, For the Life of the World: Letters to the Exiles. Evan Koons, Stephen Grabill, Dwight Gibson, along with others have put together a seven-part series that explores the concept of “Oikonomia”–God’s program for the world. The film asks the question, “What is salvation for?” Each 20-minute session exhibits a quirky, breezy charm that keeps the viewer engaged. They really have pulled off quite an accomplishment: a series that is as fun to watch as it is thought-provoking. And by “thought-provoking” I mean the series candidly asks the right questions and supplies credible, biblical answers. Here’s a trailer:

The seven sessions cover the topics of:

  • Exile
  • Love
  • Creative Service
  • Order
  • Wisdom
  • Wonder
  • The Church

“For the Life of the World” addresses a serious need in evangelical churches in a winsome, helpful manner. Your Sunday school, Bible study, or small group needs to watch this series. Information about obtaining materials can be found here.

Creation Care Symposium at Hope Lutheran Church

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A Creation Care Symposium will be held on Nov. 7-8 at Hope Lutheran Church in Wake Forest, NC. Speakers include Matthew Sleeth of Blessed Earth Ministries, Ellen Davis of Duke Divinity School, and Charles Arand of Concordia Seminary. A number of Southeastern Seminary faculty are involved: Bruce Ashford, Benjamin Quinn, and yours truly, Ken Keathley. The symposium’s theme is “Let’s be ‘caretakers’ of God’s Creation.”

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You can register for the meeting here. Be sure to select ‘Christian Creation Stewardship Symposium’ in the Upcoming Events section.